Alla I., Holocaust Case Manager, is the recipient of the 2020-2021 Award for Excellence– one of the highest honours within Circle of Care’s employee recognition program, Champions of Care.
The position that requires care
In her role as a Holocaust Survivor Services Case Manager, Alla I. sees the triumphs, struggles, joys, and pain that her clients and their loved ones navigate through in their final years of life. Her clients have all been impacted directly by the Holocaust— whether displaced from their homes, forced to flee and hide, taken to a work camp or concentration camp— and survived. Many are Russian-speaking Jews from former Soviet countries. All have been left with some level of trauma from their youth, which requires special understanding, knowledge, and sensitivity.
Alla and her fellow Case Managers provide high quality case management services to these Holocaust Survivors. Their role includes completing assessments that identify the needs of the client to ensure they receive equitable care. They also work collaboratively with other Circle of Care teams to improve client safety and health.
“I’ve never known someone who works as hard as Alla does for her clients,” says Yana Z., Practice Lead for our Holocaust Survivor Services. “She understands the challenges our clients may face and will go out of her way and research other resources — if necessary— to make sure our clients receive what they need.”
As the pandemic restricted activities for the elderly population, many Holocaust survivors were left isolated in their homes. During that time, Circle of Care Holocaust Case Managers maintained contact with their clients and ensured their needs were met, along with connecting them to appropriate support systems for their wellbeing. Circle of Care teams worked together to deliver boxes of fresh fruits and vegetables, as well as Hanukkah and Purim boxes to Holocaust Survivors in need.
Working with care
To her co-workers, Alla is known to be hard working, caring, and very detail-oriented. She uses these skills to provide the best care she can for both her clients and her coworkers.
“She loves what she does and cares for her clients so much,” says Yana. “She always goes above and beyond the call of duty. She’s very professional, very focused on the details, and never misses a deadline no matter how big her caseload is.”
As part of a small team, Alla and her seven fellow Case Managers provide support to over 1,600 clients in the Holocaust Survivors Services Program (HSSP). Despite her large caseload, Alla never hesitates to help her co-workers and care for more clients when a co-worker is absent or on vacation.
“No matter how much she already has on her plate, she always offers to help her team,” says Yana. “For example, in the summer, people always go on vacation, and during that time Alla always offers to help in any way she can and makes sure everything gets done with care.”
In the two years she’s been with Circle of Care, Alla never fails to support her team when needed.
“One thing I really appreciate is that she always asks how she can help and collaborates wonderfully with others,” says fellow Case Manager Alia P. “She makes sure that clients are taken care of and never leaves anything over the next day.”
Alla’s hard work and determination are also recognized and appreciated by her clients. One of her client’s family members recognized her through our Champions of Care employee recognition program for taking immediate action on a situation.
“I particularly want to thank Alla for helping me to get a new walker for my mom; her old one broke apart. It was her lifeline and I needed to get one to her as soon as possible. Alla stepped in and not only gave me all the information I needed, but she also called the LHIN, which definitely sped up the process,” said the client’s daughter.
Celebrated for her excellence
In June 2021, Alla received our Champions of Care Award for Excellence. This award is given to someone who relentlessly advances the quality of care within the organization and pursues the highest standards in care. Alla demonstrated a high quality of care to her clients and colleagues and continues to go above and beyond the call of duty.
“I wasn’t shocked when they announced her winning the award, because she is exactly the type of person who is supposed to receive it,” says Yana.